Contrary to popular belief, Friday the 13th is not an unlucky day. Case in point, the fantastic time we had at Venice beach! After starting this so called unlucky day with a very productive work period (these essays are practically writing themselves!), we hopped on the bus and headed to Venice Beach to join the millions of visitors that pass through each year. Those of us who haven’t gotten sick of sand walked along the water, watching out for the surfers that flock to the area. Others decided to hang back on the boardwalk to check out the eclectic crowd of vendors, artists, and street performers that lined the promenade (did anyone else see the Spanish singing Darth Vader?). Still more wandered up to Abbot Kinney, the ‘Coolest block in America’ according to GQ magazine.
Afterwords, our buses braved the LA traffic to get to the Universal City Walk. Built in 1993, the Walk is three blocks of shops adjacent to Universal Studios Theme Park. Like a miniature Times Square, we were dazzled by the neon lights and inviting storefronts. Some of us bought souvenirs at the Hard Rock Cafe, while others bought tasty treats at Voodoo Donuts. We ate a very filling dinner at Buca Di Beppo (SO much pasta…) and with happy bellies we made our way back to UCLA to sleep.